The house is real, not imaginary. But it is also a place lodged deep in the imagination, a dream place whose actual coordinates have been forgotten.

In the last years of her very long life, my mother’s memory, eroded by time and general anaesthetics, returned to the house where she lived as a little girl, a small house built of corrugated iron and wood. Now, when most of her past had slipped out of sight, the Blackridge house gleamed like a lighted window in the gathering dark:

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.